The therapeutic play space is equipped with a variety of materials such as a sand tray for self expression and emotional exploration, art for creativity, music for communication, puppets for exploring relationships and self care.
Play is a natural medium for expression and is vital for growth and development. Play therapy offers the client a safe way to act out feelings and problems with a therapeutic objective.
The therapist encourages insight through reflection in sessions that are predominantly child led, at their pace and with their direction. Healing can occur on many levels following our natural inner trend towards health.
There may be no noticeable changes after or between sessions, or there may be immediate change, it all depends on the child and family. It is important to recognise that the child may wish to keep the details of the session to themselves and internalise their feelings, or they may want to talk about things too.
The general length of the sessions are 45 minutes to an hour. It is recommended that children attend 1-3 sessions to allow time for adequate observation and rapport building between the therapist and child. The sessions can be arranged weekly or fortnightly, dependent on the client’s needs.
Parents can self refer their child for Play Therapy with no need for a Doctor’s referral. An SDQ (Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire) will be completed by the family to assist in determining the area of development that the client is needing help with.
Short term goals are generated between the family and myself to be able to measure behavioural changes.
Clients that may benefit from Play Therapy may include those experiencing difficulties such as:
- Bed wetting
- Communication Problems
- Shyness and withdrawal
- Relating to others
- Learning difficulties
There is not an age limit for those wishing to explore Play Therapy but commonly the average age of clients I have worked with are aged between 8-12.